2017-2018 Catalog

Honors Program

Academic Affairs

(310) 243-2432

Program Description, Features and Benefits

The University Honors Program offers a community of Honors students and faculty who are committed to academic excellence, creativity, critical thinking, and independent research.
The program provides an academically enriched and socially supportive environment that inspires students in all disciplines to become creative and critical thinkers as well as leaders in their fields.  Honors students receive the extra stimulation of a special program while participating in the life of the campus at large. The program fosters the intellectual curiosity of all students and provides rigorous preparation for those interested in pursuing advanced degrees in graduate or professional school.
All components of the program are designed to provide an atmosphere in which committed students may strive for excellence and further the process of self-discovery, which is the significant goal of a university education: "Education is not preparation for life; education is life itself." (John Dewey)
Honors Program students have priority registration privileges, priority consideration for on-campus student housing, and individual academic mentoring by the program coordinator.  First year and transfer students who are eligible for the Honors Program qualify for the President's Honors Scholarship.
Honors Contracts, Seminars and Senior Thesis

Honors Contracts enable a student to have the designation "Honors" appended to a given upper division course by completing more sophisticated work than the instructor is asking of the regularly enrolled students. With this option, the student, with the consent and guidance of the instructor, can undertake Honors-level study, and receive Honors credit in a non-Honors course. The Honors work undertaken is in addition to, rather than instead of, the regular course assignments.
The student and faculty member agree at the beginning of the course on the nature of the work to be done for Honors credit (examples might include pretesting lab experiments, making one or more special presentations to the class, or creating an annotated bibliography of materials). This agreement, its rationale, and its means of evaluation, are specified on a proposal form submitted to the Honors Program coordinator by the fifth week of the semester.
Special Seminar courses offer Honor students an opportunity to exploring inter-disciplinary topics or issues with faculty members.
Honors Scholars are upper division Honors Program students who participate in independent research under the direction of faculty members in their fields.  Honors Scholars receive academic credit for their work with these faculty members on research or teaching-related activities for a semester.
The Senior Honors Thesis enables students to pursue an original project in an area of their interest (usually within the major) culminating in a substantial written report or other appropriate result. Students work under the guidance of a faculty member in the area of interest. Successful completion of the thesis will be noted on the student transcript. Students should inquire at the Honors Program for guidelines and direction.


The program is open to undergraduate students from throughout the University. Eligibility is determined by grade point average, SAT scores, community service experience, and personal interviews.  For application information contact Academic Affairs WH 440.

Honor/Service Societies

(May require minimum grade point average and/or particular departmental affiliation)

  • Delta Mu Delta - Epsilon Mu Chapter
  • Phi Kappa Phi
  • Phi Alpha Theta
  • Pi Alpha Alpha
  • Sigma Pi Sigma

See the Student Organizations section for additional Honor Societies.